accommodation to change: A stockpile of emptiness builds up and, not being
recognized, not lived through in bereavement, feeds the frantic pace. Then,
"wiped out," the cycle begins anew. To refuse energy in the name of poverty makes celebration possible. To be thus impoverished is a condition no
commodity can enrich; only the gifts that come freely in celebration can
answer such poverty. In this celebration of the loss of the flesh and the
familiar we find that we are reflected, not in the chrome and glass of downtown, the coffins of vampires, but in the bums and bag ladies looking in the
trash cans or, hands outstretched, asking for a gift.
They teach us how to be poor. Ask for a gift. Gifts are not scarce commodities. They are always essentially plentiful. With arms outstretched,
backs turned to the temples of scarcity, we celebrate: "A festival is essentially a phenomenon of wealth; not, to be sure, the wealth of money, but of
existential richness. Absence of calculation, in fact lavishness, is one of its
Thus enfleshed and impoverished, we celebrate our losses, not nostalgic
for the past, not enthralled with the brave new world. In enacting grief for
ourselves and our world, we take up a place, stepping from white noise with
its swirling winds and fast lanes. Our place is filled with modern junk, surrounded by noise and speed, with fleshless energized calm vampires, but a
place, nonetheless, in which to bury the dead.
On this distinction, see
Alfred Schutz, "The Social World and the Theory of
Social Action", in Collected Papers, Vol. II: Studies in Social Theory, ed.
A. Brodersen ( The Hague: Martinus Nijhoff, 1971), 9.
Actually, all social scientific writing uses metaphors and other rhetorical de
vices. However, they tend to be masked under an antirhetorical rhetoric, which has
been labeled the "rhetoric of objectivity." Greater attention is being given to the
rhetoric of science in recent years. See Michael Billig, "Repopulating the Depopu
lated Pages of Social Psychology", Theory & Psychology 4 ( 1994):307-35; Donald McCluskey
, "The Rhetoric of Economics", Journal of Economic Literature 21 ( 1983): 481-517;
A. J. Soyland, Psychology as Metaphor ( London: Sage, 1994).
Susan Banham, "Stress in the Workplace -- What Can Be Done about
It?" Insurance Review ( May/June 1985):12.
Peter Marris, Loss and Change ( Garden City; N.Y.: Anchor Books, 1975), 31- 32.
Peter Marris, "The social impact of stress", in Mental Health and the Economy,
L. A. Ferman and
J. P. Gordus ( Kalamazoo, Mich.: W. E. Upjohn Institute for
Employment Research, 1979), 311.
Allen C. Bluedorn, Introduction to "Special Book Review Section on the Classics of Management", Academy of Management Review 11( 2) ( April 1986):443.
Carl B. Kaufman, Man Incorporate: The Individual and His Work in an Organi
zational Society ( Garden City, N.Y.: Anchor Books, 1969), 140.
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Book title: The Anthropology of Medicine:From Culture to Method.
Contributors: Lola Romanucci-Ross - Editor, Daniel E. Moerman - Editor, Laurence R. Tancredi - Editor.
Publisher: Bergin & Garvey.
Place of publication: Westport, CT.
Publication year: 1997.
Page number: 302.
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